On March 21st – 24th, 2016, the Association for Environmental Health and Sciences (AEHS) Foundation held its 26th annual Conference on Soil, Water, Energy and Air. The annual conference brings together 500-600 environmental professionals to share information on technological advances, new scientific achievements and the success of current environmental regulation programs.
EnviroForensics Director of Vapor Intrusion Megan Hamilton and Vapor Intrusion Team Member Kathleen Nazareth had the opportunity to present two presentations at the conference this year. The presentations on “The Production and Management of Methane in Soil Gas during Remediation at Drycleaner Sites” and “The Costs and Liability Associated with Evolving Vapor Intrusion (VI) Technical Guidance” piqued a high amount of interest and were a great success! “The Production and Management of Methane in Soil Gas during Remediation at Drycleaner Sites” explained how the use of in-situ enhanced reductive dechlorination (ERD) inoculants as a groundwater contaminant mass reduction method produces methane in both the dissolved phase and vapor phase. Preliminary estimation, monitoring and mitigation methods were included in the presentation, as well as a discussion of lessons learned and upcoming advancements.
“The Cost and Liability of Evolving Technical Guidance” is a study in which a number of sites with subsurface releases of PCE or TCE have been reassessed in light of technical guidance changes that have occurred since 2002. The presentation included a comparison of the assessment and mitigation costs that would have occurred if performed under older state and federal VI guidance (more conservative) versus the latest version of the Final USEPA VI guidance (less conservative). This study pointed out some interesting trends, identified investigation parameters with the biggest influence on costs, and empirically demonstrated that advances in science and regulatory guidance directly decreases the costs and liability associated with VI investigation and mitigation at environmental clean-up sites.
These presentations have also been approved for presentation at the Tenth International Battelle Conference on Remediation of Chlorinated and Recalcitrant Compounds, which will take place May 23-26 in Palm Springs, California. The Battelle Conference is one of the industry’s premier remediation conferences, attracting attendees from across the country and around the world. EnviroForensics Senior Geochemist Keith Gaskill and VI Team Member Grace Randall will present these studies.
2016 has been an exciting year for EnviroForensics. We celebrated our 20th anniversary April 1st, and this summer, we anticipate the completion of our new downtown Indianapolis headquarters. We have also begun new employee-focused initiatives. Our talented employees are the major force behind our success, and we want to ensure that the EnviroForensics Team remains as engaged and efficient as possible.
One such program that began in January was our remote work policy. This allows our technical staff to schedule two to four days per month to focus on complex writing, communication or analytical assessment activities in a suitable remote environment, free of common office distractions. Although we had never offered remote work options before, employees had shared their strong interest in such a program, and we were eager to make this happen for them.
So far, our remote work policy has been a success! Employees have expressed that the program has enabled them to be more productive by allowing them to work in a distraction-free setting when completing major writing or analytical tasks. They have enjoyed the flexibility this option provides. Not only has productivity increased, but employee satisfaction has grown even more.
At EnviroForensics, we know that our employees are the key to our success. Our staff of engineers and scientists are some of the best in the industry, and we are constantly seeking ways to help them further develop in their skills and conduct the best work that they can. We take their feedback seriously, which has helped us to better serve their needs and launch programs such as the remote work policy.
Friday, April 22nd is Earth Day. This year’s Earth Day will focus on trees as part of five major goals the Earth Day Network is undertaking for the five-year countdown to Earth Day’s 50th anniversary. The goal is to plant 7.8 billion trees in the next five years.
Trees contribute to a cleaner, healthier and more sustainable planet by absorbing harmful excess CO2 from the atmosphere. On their website, the Earth Day Network says that in one year, “an acre of mature trees absorbs the same amount of CO2 produced by driving the average car 26,000 miles.” Additionally, the website explains that trees also absorb odors and pollutant gases and filter particulates out of the air.
In honor of Earth Day, EnviroForensics has compiled a list of tips and ideas to Make Every Day Earth Day. We believe it is important to carry the spirit of Earth Day throughout the entire year by taking steps each day to practice sustainable and eco-friendly habits.
Some examples of the tips included in the slideshow presentation are:
- Turning off non-essential lights;
- Using alternative ways to travel to work, such as riding a bike, taking the bus, or coordinating a carpool;
- Eating local and seasonal food;
- Practicing minimalism by getting rid of what you don’t need and living with less material items.
To view the full slideshow and the rest of the tips, click on the following link: How to Make Every Day Earth Day.
Join us in Making Every Day Earth Day to help make our planet a cleaner, healthier and more sustainable place. Every habit you can change, no matter how small, will contribute to a healthier planet for everyone to enjoy for generations to come.